Saturday, September 5, 2015

Rosemount Museum, 9/05/2015

Today we visited the beautiful Victorian residence, now known as Rosemount Museum, that was built between 1891 and 1893. It is a 37-room, 24,000 square foot mansion that was home to the Thatcher family for 75 yeras. It was donated to the community by the youngest Thatcher son with most of the furnishings in tact.

Today it is a museum managed by the Historical Society and is a on the National Register of Historic Places. 

Originally from Pennsylvania, John Thatcher moved to Colorado where he met and married Margaret Henry. Mr. Thatcher had interests in mining, cattle ranching, and agriculture but made much of his fortune as a merchant and banker. His cost $100,000 to build (including the interior woodwork, built-in furniture, decorative ceilings, lighting fixtures, wall paintings, etc.) and furnish the mansion was a huge amount of money at the time. Henry Hudson Holly, a well-known architect of the times from New York City, was hired to design the house by Thatcher. 

Phyolite, a pink volcanic stone, was quarried about 75 miles from Pueblo and used to build the mansion and carriage house located nearby. 

Almost all furnishings in the house are original to the home. Amazing oak, cherry, mahogany, and maple woodwork can be found throughout the house. The grand entrance includes the largest of 10 fireplaces, the largest of the many Tiffany chandiliers, and a beautifully carved staircase. At the landing on the staircase is a 9'x13' stained glass window entitiled, Kingdoms of Nature. The Thatchers commissioned Charles Booth of New York to design it to memorialize two children that did not survive childhood (of the five children they had). It is absolutely gorgeous, but cannot be seen from the exterior today due to a protective covering to shield it from damage. The photo below of the entrance can be found on-line. No photos are permitted of the interior of the home (what a pity...) 

Servants quarters are on one side of the house with their bedrooms and bathroom on the third floor. The woodwork is pine in this portion of the house and even the door knobs are of much lower quality than the residential parts of the house. There is an elaborate intercom system to call servants from most rooms in the house.

Today we saw several displays on the third floor: 
  • the collections of local philanthropist, McClelland, from his international travels to Europe and Africa (including an Egyptian mummy! and coffin) as well as other exotic items.
  • an office from First National Bank (that Mr. Thatcher owned with others)
  • the trunk room (yes, they had a room on the third floor thar's sole purpose was to store trunks that the family used when traveling the world and trunks of visitors from the East). 
A carriage house (6,000 square feet) was also built on the property (one square block). Today it is the Carriage House Restaurant. 

Admission was $6/adults and $5/seniors. There is a small gift shop in a room that was part of the servants quarters next to the kitchen. 

This mansion is absolutely gorgeous and can only be seen by guided tour. Our tour guide took about 1.5 hours (too long) although we had been told it is usually about an hour. The pace was toooo slow for my taste (but then again, I am highly critical of things like this!) Regardless, I am glad that we had the opportunity to see the beautiful furnishings and architectural details of the home. 

See their website for information on hours of operation and events. 



  1. I don't usually like guided tours either, because they're not at my (unusually quick) pace. They tend to be around the median pace, which can speed up some slower folks faster than I'm able to do (ahem... Justine). "Stop and smell the roses!", she says. I know, I know, I know.

    I'm finding that guided tours are becoming more common in historic places because guests aren't respecting the property when they're on their own. That makes me sad. So I'm happy to play by the rules to preserve history, if guests destroying it is the other end of the spectrum.

  2. Yes, you are so right. I learn a lot of guided tours but I do like a fast paced.